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Taking DX to the next level with hybrid cloud

If you’re stuck in a ‘digital deadlock,’ blending hybrid cloud with on-prem platforms could speed up your digital transformation projects — particularly when it comes to unified communication and collaboration.

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So you’re on the road to digital transformation (or at least talking about it). What are the next steps?

A newly released survey by Nemertes Research and Mitel — which gathered data from more than 800 IT and business leaders — found that blending hybrid cloud with on-prem deployments is becoming the norm and positively correlates with unified communications. But the report argues that for DX projects to succeed, they need to happen quickly — within six months.

“This doesn’t mean the entire transformation project must be complete within six months; it means there must be milestones by which measurable changes have occurred. Without a time-based approach for measuring success, digital projects may lag, resulting in competitors gaining an advantage, stakeholders losing interest, or budgets drying up,” says the report.

Indeed, IDC reports that 58 per cent of organizations are in a “digital deadlock.” While they’re running projects and making progress on DX initiatives, they’re “not making the headway required to achieve the larger goal — to digitally transform the overall organization.”

The Nemertes report argues that a successful approach to DX involves embracing hybrid cloud so you can maintain critical on-prem platforms while at the same time integrate new capabilities from the cloud.

An enterprise with legacy systems — which have been customized over the years — can’t just “flash cut all of its on-premises platforms to the cloud.” Instead, it could turn to hybrid cloud, such as blending a cloud-based IoT service with an on-premises collaboration platform.

In its 2018 Unified Communications and Collaboration study, for example, Nemertes found that 38 per cent of organizations now use hybrid approaches for the collaboration applications.

While some applications run best on public cloud and others on private cloud, Cisco’s Pete Johnson writes in Network World that “by taking a hybrid cloud approach — more than likely utilizing a Cloud Management Platform that makes it easy to manage applications in multiple locations from a single management plane — companies can maximize their deployment flexibility for individual applications within the portfolio.”

The portability of workloads “makes a digital strategy more cost-effective over time and yet another reason why hybrid cloud is so important as this revolution continues,” writes Johnson.

That goes both ways: In some cases, you might want to move applications to the cloud, while in other cases you may want to move them back. A hybrid cloud model allows you to move applications back to their on-premise environments, according to Deloitte, “providing a potential safety net if moving to the cloud results in higher costs or poor performance.”

When it comes to hybrid approaches, Nemertes recommends that IT leaders evaluate where cloud services make sense, look for vendors who can support hybrid cloud approaches, and plan for future technologies that can be integrated into communications platforms.

Image: iStock

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